NASCAR has added an addendum to its safety rules and will apply to all of its racing series, effective immediately.
The rule reads as follows:
“During an Event, if a racecar is involved in an on-track incident and/or is stopped on or near the racing surface and unable to continue to make forward progress, unless extenuating emergency conditions exist with the racecar (i.e. fire, smoke in cockpit, etc.) the driver should take the following steps:
· Shut off electrical power and, if driver is uninjured, lower window net
· Do not loosen, disconnect or remove any driver personal safety equipment until directed to do so by safety personnel or a NASCAR/Track Official
· After being directed to exit the racecar, the driver should proceed to either the ambulance, other vehicle, or as otherwise directed by safety personnel or a NASCAR/Track Official
· At no time should a driver or crew member(s) approach any portion of the racing surface or apron
· At no time should a driver or crew member(s) approach another moving vehicle
All vehicles not involved in the incident or that are able to continue afterwards should slow down to a cautious speed as outlined in Section 10-4 (Yellow Flag), use extreme care as they approach an incident scene, and follow any directions given by safety personnel or NASCAR/Track Officials. Cars in line behind the safety car should not weave or otherwise stray from the line in the vicinity of the incident.”
The rule was made in light of an incident that claimed the life of Kevin Ward, Jr. at the Canandaigua Motorsports Park in New York on Aug. 9. He had gotten out of his racecar after the racing field was under a caution situation and approached other drivers as they were mobile on the track. He was hit by a competitor’s race car which resulted in fatal injuries.
Many racetracks around the country have enacted a similar rule pertaining to their own facility.